My Rights – Active Participation

Project facts

Project promoter:
Lithuanian Centre for Human Rights
Project Number:
Target groups
Non governmental organisation
Initial project cost:
Final project cost:
From EEA Grants:
€ 105,929
The project is carried out in:


Lithuanian society lacks relevant and up-to-date information about human rights and their protection mechanisms. Public institutions that must guarantee human rights do not engage in dialogue with society. Media is insensitive towards minorities and fosters stereotypes. Project aims to strengthen human rights discourse in Lithuania and build dialogue between civil society and public institutions; also improve competence of journalists and law-enforcement agencies in freedom of expression and hate speech. With direct support of Norwegian Centre against Racism a public forum for human rights awareness raising and sustainable dialogue between society, NGOs and government shall be developed, and advocacy action shall be taken based on problems identified through the forum. Competences of participating human rights activists and NGO shall be developed through advocacy and media monitoring trainings with special focus of prevention, identification and reporting of hate speech. Cooperation with media and law enforcement agencies, in particlar, in fighting hate speech, shall be consolidated through joint research and international conference.

Summary of project results

Lithuanian society had no access to relevant, systematic and updated information on human rights and their defence mechanisms. Therefore, people lacked essential human rights knowledge. Public institutions and NGOs often were unaware of structural issues people are facing in everyday life; there was a need to establish a stronger link between organisations and general society. Media instead of playing a role in fostering this process and publicising human rights issues, has often crossed ethical boundaries, was insensitive towards different minority groups and tended to represent particular ethnic groups and minorities stereotypically. The project was aimed at strengthening human rights discourse in Lithuania, involving civil society into public discussions, strengthening the ties of society, NGOs and public institutions, ensuring the conditions for continuous and constructive dialogue that would allow identifying and solving systematic human rights problems. Additional aim was to strengthen the standards of journalist ethics, improve the competence of journalists and law-enforcement agencies ensuring that freedom of speech, freedom of expression are compatible with human rights and ethics. Project promoter has achieved the following Objectives: 1) created an interactive grassroots driven initiative to promote a public human rights discourse. Renewed website became the only human rights news portal, public forum, where citizens and NGOs would raise awareness about violations, became a platform for a sustainable dialogue between citizens, institutions and human rights NGOs. 2) Created and sustained a constructive dialogue between people, NGOs and state institutions functioning in the field of human rights, facilitate advocacy activities, by involving users and associated NGOs, local partner organisations. This allowed to establish a long lasting collaborations between civil society and state institutions, and the web portal became an information source for advocacy campaigns, a platform to encourage civic activism; 3) Contributed to strengthening ethical journalism and ethical multicultural dialogue in the media, through cooperation with partners, sharing good practices and research on representation of different social groups in Lithuanian online media. An international conference on freedom of speech, freedom of expression and interrelation with other human rights was organised at the end of the project.

Summary of bilateral results

Cooperation in the project was structured as follows: 1) Norwegian Centre against Racism hosted 2 persons from Lithuanian Centre for Human Rights. During the good practice exchange, representatives of LCHR were able to: a) Observe the good practices on how Partner organisation carries out the hate speech monitoring, based on the portrayal of different minority groups in the media; what angles do they analyse while monitoring, the extremism topic was discussed; b) Learn the involvement in assisting the victims of hate crimes. LCHR had meetings with a number of Norwegian NGOs involved in the topic – LGBT NGO, NGO working on the ground of origin and ethnicity, Helsinki Committee etc.); c) Work on promoting intercultural dialogue in Europe. 2) the Norwegian Centre against Racism carried out an online consultation for LCHR staff and external expert on how to carry out media monitoring. 3) Norwegian Centre against Racism delegated a speaker John Færseth to participate in the international conference “Freedom of expression on internet: human rights, ethics and legal practices”. Mr J. Færseth gave a speech about online activism in fighting racism. The conference was held in the ministry of Justice of the Republic of Lithuania and was dedicated to prosecutors, crime investigators, judges, lawyers, decision makers, NGO activists, representatives of minority communities and media. 4) deputy director for communication at Norwegian Centre against Racism Mr. Ervin Kohn gave an interview for Lithuanian human rights news portal, where he spoke about NGO role in state governance, Centre activities and fight against extremism and racism. Valuable experience has been gained while working with the partner in Norway. LCHR and the Norwegian Centre against Racism shared common goals and similar mission. Moreover, an added value was Partners extensive experience in the field, which lasts for over 40 years. Norwegian Centre against Racism employs a professional team. The partnership brought to surface important and useful information, particularly in the preparation stage of the research on the portrayal of minority groups in Lithuanian news portals. The research was adapted to more relevant topic (e.g., do marginal politicians, often with racist political programme, and other racist activists get publicity in the popular media). The partnership have achieved in strengthened advocacy work and knowledge on monitoring, extremism and online activism.